Frantz Fanon unveiled

1960s: Days of Rage

“As a child in the 1960s, my mother would routinely pass a secondary school on her way home in downtown Algiers named Lycée Frantz Fanon. To her, the name was quite peculiar, since all the other schools had newly Arabic names, alluding to different figures within the independence movement and Algerian history more broadly. She was perplexed as to why this school kept this seemingly white French name, only to learn much later in life—from her son, a particularly angsty postcolonial teen—that it was named for a black man from the Caribbean and that he had made contributions to Algeria’s independence movement. This story differs quite radically from today’s nostalgic renderings of Algerian independence from budding, self-proclaimed revolutionaries—both in the academy and activist circles in the West—that place Fanon and his works at the center of the struggle. The two have become so inseparable that I feel the need to…

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